European Tech: Remote Work


Europe continues to be a hotbed of trends revolving around remote work. Turns out, there are a lot of different directions this rollercoaster can go. It's not just about, "Will we or won't we go hybrid?"


That's why we invited Berlin-based HeyJobs founder and CEO Marius Luther on, along with Lieven, to sort it all out. From a shortcoming at Google for Jobs to capturing talent in other Euros to employees taking advantage of companies who allow a WFH option, this episode has it all.


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C&C Podcast Does Europe INTRO (5s):

Some podcasts, do it for the fun. Some do it for the fame, Chad and Cheese they do it for global effin domination. That's why bringing America to its knees was just the beginning. Now they have their eyes set on conquering Europe and they've drafted industry veteran Lieven Van Nieuwenhuyze of Belgium to help them navigate the old country and bring HR's most dangerous podcast across the pond to trash-talk like never before. Not safe for work in any language. The Chad and Cheese podcast does Europe.


Joel (38s):

Oh yeah, Chad is heading to Europe soon, now that's a border wall worth building. What's up guys? You're listening to the Chad and Cheese podcast does Europe. I'm your cohost Joel "cause chaos and rock like Amadeus" Cheeseman.


Chad (53s):

And I'm Chad "it feels like Europe in this place. My fucking AC's down" Sowash.


Lieven (58s):

And I'm still just Lieven Van Nieuwenhuyze.


Joel (1m 0s):

And on this episode, talking some Google for jobs, with a German startup founder, cash money flowing into European companies that support remote work and over employment is now a thing. Blame it all on Ireland, I guess.


SFX (1m 17s):

Europe has a bunch of countries in it.


Chad (1m 19s):

How do you guys do this? I don't have AC today. I feel so pampered. I am hot. I am irritable. This is something that Europeans work with all the time. You guys don't do AC do ya?


Lieven (1m 31s):

We don't need AC.


Joel (1m 33s):

Not yet. Climate change says you will at some point need AC. Trust Me.


Chad (1m 38s):

Oh yeah. We've got to go through our, our.


Joel (1m 40s):

Yeah, our mystery guest. Everyone please welcome Marius Luther. Marius is founder and CEO at HeyJobs, which is based in Berlin. They're doing some great things out there. So let's get a little bit about Marius the person and we'll get to the company as we get into the show. Marius, welcome and tell us a little bit about you.


Marius (2m 2s):

Thanks for having me. Pleasure to be here. I'm Marius, thirty-three in Berlin and building up HeyJobs and been in the tech entrepreneurship scene for the better part of the last 10 years. And after five years doing various other startups and realizing how hard it is to have good staff and build up HeyJobs in 2016. And here we are.


Chad (2m 26s):

So are you Lex Luther's good brother?


Joel (2m 29s):

Does he have hair or not?


Marius (2m 30s):

I'm losing my hair right now that's for sure.


Joel (2m 34s):

So Maurice has already agreed that Belgian beer is better than German beer. So leaving Lieven's good with him being on the show.


Lieven (2m 40s):

I tend to agree with him.


Chad (2m 44s):

Like I'd said, just as long as you're not talking about IPA's because Europe doesn't do a good IPA, even though they invented it. I don't get that shit.


Lieven (2m 51s):

Who's got a shout out? okay. So I've got one for Mauris and Lieven. Okay. So do you guys, do either of you have Apple plus streaming?


Marius (2m 60s):

No.


Lieven (3m 0s):

I do. I think, I think my children tricked me into it, yeah.


Chad (3m 4s):

Okay. So it doesn't seem like either one of you have watched Ted Lasso, which is a comedy on Apple Plus where an American college football coach is hired to run a proper football team in England. I'm looking for European listener feedback on this one because Joel and I love this, but we're a couple of dumb Americans. So we're looking if you've checked out, if you're a European and you've watched Ted Lasso, let us know. Is it a good show from a European perspective because Joel and I are idiot asses over here in the U S? We love it. So Apple Plus Ted Lasso, let us know what you think.


Lieven (3m 40s):

Noted.


Joel (3m 41s):

Love it. Shout out to VR and who doesn't love that everybody? My favorite topic. Alright, got ready for the metaverse for work. Everybody. Facebook Horizon work rooms was introduced last week. Think of it as putting on a headset, being in a meeting that's virtual talking to other emojicons or emojis about a meeting. So if you're tired of the panel-based zoom meeting, get ready for the metaverse for work. Shout out to Metaverse.


Chad (4m 12s):

Yeah, here in the US, I don't know if this is just kind of like a us thing where we think that we can make, you know, the whole VR goggles, no humans thing work, but what about Europe is Europe deep into augmented reality? Virtual reality? What do you guys think? I mean, you're both obviously high up in tech companies, founders and CEO. What do you think about this, this type of tech do you think it's here to stay?


Marius (4m 36s):

I think I saw it four years ago at some trade show and that now again.


Lieven (4m 41s):

It's probably here to stay, but I'm not really into it. There are certain applications where it could be fun and useful, but my children are dedicated gamers and have those VR sets and they never used them because it's just too big of a hassle to put it on.


Joel (4m 59s):

The question for me is, do you prefer the video zoom call as it is now? Or would you prefer almost a virtual experience where you could actually sit at a table virtually and talk to people? And this thing apparently is pretty cool in that the audio is based on where someone is sitting in a virtual room and all that good stuff to me. That sounds pretty cool. No?


Chad (5m 19s):

No.


Joel (5m 20s):

No? you all prefer the Brady Bunch style panels on a screen.


Chad (5m 25s):

Well, I mean, you've got to wear a helmet the entire time, or at least a headset, right? I mean, how much of a pain in the ass is that going to be? We think zoom is a pain in the ass right now because we're looking at a screen. Can you imagine wearing that fucking concoction on your head all day?


Marius (5m 41s):

Having said that, I think, there will be some pretty amazing solutions be built to do that kind of remote collaboration thing. And I think tech is just scratching the surface of what's possible and still too clumsy. But I agree with you. I would not wear a helmet, but I think there will be a lot of cool stuff coming.


Chad (5m 57s):

What about the Elon Musk chip in the brain where all of it just happens?


Lieven (6m 3s):

Yeah. That's a nice one. Elon Musk he, like chips, two monkeys, and they could play pong against each other. It's great. I mean, that's science, Elon Musk for president, I keep repeating it.


Joel (6m 14s):

President of the world.


Lieven (6m 16s):

Yeah, Elon Musk. I tell you. No really, that's something I like, it's a better than augmented reality. It's just cool.


Joel (6m 24s):

If it comes with a cyber truck, I'm all good.


Chad (6m 26s):

It's called neural links. So if listeners out there, if you haven't checked it out, check out neuro link. It's pretty bad ass. I'm not putting the thing on my head, that's for goddamn. Sure. But it is that giant leap from stupid headsets on your face to that next generation.


Joel (6m 42s):

Can I give a shout out to some young Scots?


Chad (6m 45s):

Oh yeah.


Joel (6m 46s):

Okay. So some new research from the CIPD that's the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development found that nearly half of all, 18 to 30 year olds in Scotland, that's 48% feel the pandemic has harmed their long-term career prospects. And almost two thirds say the pandemic has made their mental health worse. So drink up Scots life is good.


Chad (7m 7s):

Drink up. I mean, seriously. So Bill Borman and Peter Gold, I'm going to give these guys a shout out. Thanks for all the common good trolling on Facebook. It seems like whenever the US does something stupid, which we've been doing a lot over the last, I don't know, four or five decades, and Europeans always loved to troll us. Not like they're not doing it themselves, i.e. Brexit, that kind of shit. So is it just kind of like a fun and games type of a thing? Or do you think we are really that competitive or Europe is that competitive with the US?


Lieven (7m 43s):

They're just jealous. That's a good one.


Chad (7m 48s):

What do you think Marius? I mean, you're right in the heart of it. What do Germans think? Is this a big competition? Because when you take a look at the funds and we'll talk about VC here in a minute, when you take a, look at the funds happening for tech in our space? In our space the U S blows the hell out of Europe. I mean, period. I think we had like 60 deals last quarter and Europe, I think maybe had 10, at the most. So when there's gotta be that competitive drive, right?


Marius (8m 16s):

And as an entrepreneur, I think you look at Silicon Valley and what's happening in the US and you're like, oh, there was a lot of capital there! Maybe we should go there or raise that capital. So, and I think in general, the admiration for the economic strength of the US I think at the same time, Europe really likes the way that society works here and maybe politics/social systems. And I think there's not a lot of jealousy in that regard with regards to the US so I think everyone is quite proud of all of what we've built up here in terms of social security and so on.


Joel (8m 51s):

I do think there's not enough credit in thinking about who came to America, right? It was the risk, it was a lot of people, but it was the risk takers, the people who wanted a second chance that wanted to start from zero and then of the Americans, the ones who are the craziest were the ones who went west. So when you look at Silicon Valley and where the risk taking happens, where people are open to it and chance, I think that we don't think enough about the DNA of America versus other parts of the world and companies getting started and risk being taken.


Marius (9m 23s):

That's what, I'm a bit scared about that we are not taking enough, nearly enough risk in Germany or in Europe, but on the whole. And that obviously means 10 years from now, 20 years from now, you know, how relevant will we be and how healthy will these economies be? If you look at tech already, the big US companies, basically I read the other day that Amazon was doing the same in sales as the GDP of Spain or something. I mean, that's pretty crazy, right?


Chad (9m 51s):

It is. Well, I mean, Germany is known for being disciplined and not really taking risks, but taking more measured risks. Right. So do you think that has been an issue with regards to not being able to innovate as quickly because we've got the dumb Americans that are over there and they'll fucking try anything!


Marius (10m 8s):

It has to do with appetite for risk. And we also don't have as much capital available. Right. So a lot of pension funds would rather invest in, I dunno, forests instead of tech startups.


Joel (10m 19s):

Yeah. What's the company out of Germany that like copies everybody. It's like two brothers?


Chad (10m 25s):

Windu. Marius actually worked for them, right?


Marius (10m 28s):

Yeah. So they're called the Samwer brothers and their strategy pretty early on was really to copy every successful US company. So they started with a copycat of eBay, back in around 2000 and sold that to eBay. And then they copied Groupon, eHarmony and Airbnb, which I was a part of. I was recruited there, it was my first job. And we kind of built Airbnb in Europe and before Airbnb crushed us, basically, but it was also a function of the amount of capital that was then poured into Airbnb meant no one else really had a chance anymore.


Chad (11m 7s):

You have a great story with Douglas Adkin, who was actually the head of community over at Airbnb. And he was at Airbnb when the brothers were trying to sell. And he was a part of that discussion. And it was one of the podcasts, we actually have done one of the series of podcasts that we've done, and it was an amazing, amazing discussion. So it's good. It's interesting to hear the other side of the table on this one. Thanks for sharing.


Marius (11m 33s):

What I can tell you. I was at this discussion as well, and he's absolutely right in how he described it, basically for context, 12 months earlier, all of us on the executive team saw the thing with same thing with Groupon and Groupon bought as a European Groupon clone for like a billion or so. So he had proved that that it worked and he tried exactly the same with the Airbnb founders, but they just hated him out of the gate for copying everything. And I think there was just too much hate to make a deal, basically.


Chad (12m 4s):

Yeah. That's kind of hard to get through. Hey, Lieven. I hear you've got an event coming up. What's happening on your side over there? Huh?


Lieven (12m 11s):

I said THE event of the year, not just a event, it's the 25th of November. We have our annual E-Recruitment Congress and it's the CRN Austin Belgium have a beautiful view on the seat. And we're having some friends of the show, friends of this show. Dee is coming. She'll be talking about remote work, everything concerning it. We have Aiden Gorden coming and we have